Alignment, Integration: Stage 5 is All About Synergy

You’ve moved beyond 50 employees. Experienced business owners will say: “Watch out. When you get to 50 employees, everything changes.” But no-one tells you exactly what those changes will be.

Because of the 7 Stages of Growth enterprise development model, we can shed some light on exactly what those business owners are cautioning you about, and hopefully save you hours and months of frustration.

As a Stage 5 company, you have 58 – 95 employees. The company is beginning to align itself. Sales and marketing understands and is involved with product development. Customer service is tied into every aspect of your operation. As the CEO, you are operating in a proactive, systematic approach instead of a reactive, scattered approach. You have trained and/or hired qualified managers and their divisions are operating on solid ground.

There’s a subtle difference now that you have “breached the 50.” While managing this dynamic organization is your number one priority, you have to shift ever so slightly into a more visionary role. No longer invisible to the outside world, your competition is heating up because you are now playing in a larger fishbowl.

The Top 5 challenges of a Stage 5 company include:

  1. There is a challenge in expanding sales or production.
  2. Difficulty forecasting problem areas before they surface.
  3. Dealing with the cost of lost expertise or knowledge when employees leave.
  4. Need for an improved profit design.
  5. Staff training.

Where Stage 4 was all about developing strong independent departments, Stage 5 is all about Integration. Because you took the time to develop strong fiefdoms, the art of integration will be much smoother.

The Five Non-Negotiable Leadership Rules for a Stage 5 company are:

  1. Integrate the management team into an inter-dependent execution-focused leadership unit.
  2. Overhaul the business design.
  3. Establish a one year operational business plan.
  4. Establish a fully integrated “living budget” by revenue group and by department.
  5. Allocate 3% of the employee’s salary for training.

You lead by showing that you value people’s input and you work to get commitment through participation, not dictation. Having spent the time and energy to build a great team, look to them for guidance and advice in their areas of expertise.
Teamwork and collaboration is crucial as you lead your team into the future.

All of ACT One’s programs are designed to focus on your stage of growth. If you are a Stage 5 company, we can provide you with the top five challenges for your stage of growth. We can get you focused on the “rules of the road” for a company with 58 – 95 employees. And we can help you get ready for the day you add that next employee and move into the next stage of growth.